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Christmas Eve – A Reflection

December 25, 2020
Sunset over the Lake on Christmas Eve

Some of my earliest memories of Christmas Eve are from my home church. Every year at the stroke of midnight, Rev Morgan would end his sermon with this phrase: “And now it is Christmas.” The last time I led worship beginning at 11pm and ending with Rev Morgan’s words was when I was deployed to Southwest Asia.

This year, we recorded our Lessons and Carols service the week of the 13th of December and watched it tonight on our website. Christmas Eve, 2020 is one for the history books as are Holy Week, Easter, and Pentecost. Through it all, the Spirit has remained faithful as I navigate this new territory with the congregation I served in Estes Park, Colorado and the congregation I currently serve in Carrollton, Georgia.

What words of familiarity and comfort do I offer this year? These words of Howard Thurman from his book The Mood of Christmas speak to Christmas being far more than one day a year. The true meaning of Christmas is expressed in the sharing of one’s graces in a world in which it is so easy to become callous, insensitive, and hard. Once this spirit becomes part of a man’s life, every day is Christmas, and every night is freighted with anticipation of the dawning of fresh, and perhaps holy, adventure. (p. 18)

May we have that renewal of spirit as we continue to serve in these unusual times. And now, as Bob Morgan always said, it is Christmas.

3 Comments
  1. Mesmerising! Love the shot 🙂

  2. Hugh Hamilton permalink

    Michael, you share such meaningful words and memories. My pastor in Spartanburg during my youth, Fred Poag, would walk to the back of the sanctuary at conclusion of the 11pm service, and announce at midnight, “it is now Christmas Day in the year of our Lord (____), give us a blessing and wish us Merry Christmas.” First time I tried to do that at end of our service, I teared up and could not speak the words, so poignant was my memory and love for him, and the love I felt for my congregation, and the power of God’s love at that moment. Thank you, ScotsIrishPadre, for your ministry, your witness, your blog, your spirit. Merry Christmas, my friend, Merry Christmas! Hugh

    • What a wonderful memory, Hugh. Thanks for sharing it with me. I tear up each time I share that blessing. Be well my friend and Merry Christmas to you! Michael

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